THE bronze medal won at this year's under-18 men's national championships remains the most visible KPI of Tasmania's continued emergence in basketball.
However, the impressive quota the state continues to enjoy in national junior squads, combined with the depth of talent on show at a state camp in Launceston yesterday, suggest the medal won in Brisbane in April was just a sign of things to come.
Three players from that team - Launceston's Kai Woodfall and Hobart duo Callum Barker and Tanner Krebs - have been selected for a national camp while Launceston's Liz Howe is a reserve in the girls' under-18 team.
In the under-16 age group, Launceston's Gabe Hadley led the national tournament despite his side finishing tenth while Sarah Jaeger, also of Launceston, continued to show she is one of the better athletes of her age.
Meanwhile, Devonport's Georgia Buchwald and Courtney Middap, of Wynyard, are in the under-17 Australian women's squad with Wynyard's Kyle Clark in the men's equivalent, all hoping to make next year's world titles.
Tasmanian Institute of Sport basketball coach Justin Schueller held a national shooting and physical testing day for potential scholarship holders at Elphin Sports Centre yesterday and is delighted with the state's ever-increasing national involvement.
``The program objective is to get athletes to Australian level,'' he said.
``Through the TIS we've been able to link directly with the needs of Basketball Australia and all 12 athletes here are on BA's depth chart with eight projected to make teams in the next two years.
``We've always had one or two but to have so many at the top level at the moment is something we're very proud of at the institute.''
Sixteen-year-olds Woodfall and Howe said the national perception of Tasmanian basketball is changing.
``There's such a big difference between getting a medal and coming fourth like we did last year,'' Woodfall said.
``To get a medal this year is not only a big deal here but also outside the state where they start noticing the talent coming out rather than just writing the state off.''
Howe added: ``I think Justin has done heaps for basketball in Tasmania. There's a winning mentality there now. We're there to win things rather than just compete.''